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May 25, 2012

REVIEW: Dark Kiss by Michelle Rowen


Title: Dark Kiss (Nightwatchers #1)
Author: Michelle Rowen
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Published: May 22, 2012
Format: Netgalley* 348 pages
I don't do dangerous.  Smart, ├╝ber-careful, ordinary Samantha-that's me. But I just couldn't pass up a surprise kiss from my number-one unattainable crush. A kiss that did something to me...something strange. Now I feel hungry all the time, but not for food. It's like part of me is missing-and I don't know if I can get it back. Then there's Bishop. At first I thought he was just a street kid, but the secrets he's keeping are as intense as his unearthly blue eyes. If he's what I think he is, he may be the only one who can help me. But something terrifying is closing in, and the one chance Bishop and I have to stop it means losing everything I ever wanted and embracing the darkness inside me.... NIGHTWATCHERS When angels and demons must work together, something beyond evil is rising...
My Review:
Samantha is a normal teenager who is careful, gets good grades and tries to stay out of trouble. Ever since her parents divorce and incident at the mall, Samantha has tried to stay on the right track. She stays away from anything remotely dangerous. However, danger must follow Sam when she gets kissed by her handsome and alluring crush, Stephen. The kiss with Stephen was supposed to be one of the best days of her life. Instead, Sam is confused by Stephen’s departure after the kiss. Not only that, she’s experiencing intense hunger that cannot be satisfied with food. To top that, she meets a lost and confused Bishop who desperately needs her help to fulfill his mission to keep the balance of Heaven and Hell.

I found Dark Kiss to be a very easy read. Michelle Rowen’s writing style was simple and clear. She definitely has a way with words and a true talent for story telling. She couples this with beautiful descriptions that are vivid and not difficult to imagine in one’s mind.

Michelle Rowen took the concept of angels and she made it into her own, bringing in different aspects to their origin and powers. She brought demons, grays, the Hollow and   different workings of Heaven and Hell into the story that I found entirely intriguing and original. She develops these parts of the story well enough, but not so much to reveal too much. At times I was a little lost with the lack of such vital background, but it didn’t bother me so much since I knew it wasn’t the focus of the book. 



Samantha was a regular teenager forced into the mess placed by Stephen and then mixed in with Bishops problems. I saw her as someone who was unsure of herself with low self-esteem. However, Sam also had this quirkiness that I liked with a touch of wittiness. She was sarcastic most of the time and she had this spunky snarky side of her that I loved most. She’s a good friend and she’s very kind. She likes to help people, especially the homeless. I thought Sam had a really strong voice in the beginning of the book and she continued to keep this along the way. I was able to feel some sort of sympathy to what Sam was going through, but I couldn’t seem to connect with her on a much deeper level. However, I believe Michelle Rowen did a great job of developing Sam’s personality and character. I can see Sam growing more into herself in the upcoming books.

I liked the addition of angel and demons working together. I thought it brought a real interesting twist to the story along with the reasoning in why their grouping was necessary for the mission. I found Bishop to be mysterious, alluring and quite sexy. He was kind and understanding and I really liked that about him. I do wish I learned more about his background than the little snippets given from him.

His relationship with Sam was an odd one. He needed Sam to help complete his mission. Her touch helps him, her abilities are useful for him and I found this a little too convenient for the two. What I wanted to know was why? Why him an why her? Not much is revealed and this kind of left me frustrated. Upon meeting, they have this instant connection and familiarity with one another. I’m not a big fan of insta-love and I think this where I failed to thoroughly enjoy Dark Kiss. I couldn’t understand, comprehend or justify their instant connection to one another. I just didn’t get it and there was no reasoning into why they felt this way towards each other. More so, I just wasn’t convinced on the depth of their feelings. It wasn’t believable to me and I struggled through this throughout the book. I also had trouble with Sam’s constant wishy-washy feelings for Bishop and I kept getting tugged back and forth along with her emotions. It was confusing and it left me a little annoyed with the way Sam was acting.



I did love the other characters in the book. My favorite had to be Kraven. He was dangerous, enticing and had this irresistible charm about him that I couldn’t get enough of. He had the best comebacks and I loved the way he spoke to Sam. Kraven had me smiling and laughing through some of my favorite parts of the book. I also liked Zach and his pure, kind-hearted personality. He was just a lovely character that I wanted to get to know more of. Another one was Connor. His appearance into the book along with his sarcasm and jokes made me laugh out load one or two times and I’m hoping as well that there will be more of him next time.

For me, Dark Kiss was a slow-paced novel. Although I was able to read this book quickly, I kept wanting to glaze over several parts that became unnecessarily slow or seemed to drag on and on. I was hoping it would pick up, but I was disappointed to find that it did not. To be honest, most of the time I was a little bored. I needed something amazing and shocking to happen, but it never really happened for me. I was looking for a big wow ending to book, but for me Dark Kiss fell flat and didn’t meet my expectations.


However, I was impressed with the overall plot and storyline for Dark Kiss. It’s something I’ve never read and up until now, I’m still very fascinated by the whole idea. I’m hoping to love the next book more than I did with Dark Kiss. I believe the series has great potential to be become a spectacular one.

My Rating: 3.5 out 5 stars

*Thanks to Netgalley and Harlequin Teen for allowing me to read Dark Kiss

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4 comments:

  1. Hi Jessirae! We did feel the same on this one. My feelings did change in the last 25% though, to the point of me wanting to pick up the sequel. Sam's wishy washy feelings towards Bishop bugged me. I wanted more of a background on him too. Great review. I'm going to go like it on GoodReads too. :)

    Rachel @ www.thereadersden.blogspot.com/

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    1. I completely agree. The last few chapters made me more intrigued even if I felt the lack of a WOW ending. I still want to know more because it has such great potential for more! Sam's feelings bugged me as well. I couldn't shake it off.

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  2. Hey, btw, I also have my review up on The Readers Den and on Goodreads. :)

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  3. It seems I liked this one a little more than you... But alas! I agree I want to know more about bishops past! And Kraven! I liked him a lot too!! :) good, honest review :)

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